In a roundup of YouTube hits that was published before that other new year (the Jewish one), a Ynet article presented a Top 10 list whose headline began "Haya eser." While this literally means "It was 10," eser in colloquial Hebrew also means "great" or one of its many slang equivalents.
- Word of the Day / Hamshush
- Word of the Day / Lefarses
- Word of the Day / Wy
- Word of the Day / Ledarben
- Word of the Day / Freier
- Word of the Day / Sababa
Though in casual speech it's not usually intended as a pun, eser tends to take on a double meaning when it makes an appearance in the press, as with an article from last month about Maccabi Haifa's 1:0 soccer victory over Maccabi Tel Aviv in a game that garnered 10 percent of television viewers. Its headline, too, began "It was eser."
And then there's the flip side. A column arguing that the perpetually cash-strapped television station Channel 10 hasn't justified its existence was, naturally, entitled "Lo haya eser" ("It wasn't eser"). David Letterman, watch out: The Hebrew language has your number.